Are They Talking About You?
by Bill Nolan
Positive or negative, Word of Mouth Marketing can be used to your advantage.
Yes, good old-fashioned Word of Mouth Marketing has entered the digital age via review websites, status ranking sites like Klout and social media platforms. Word of Mouth Marketing is still extremely crucial for your business. In fact, it’s probably more important than ever considering your customers’ opinions have the potential to reach tens of thousands of people even more quickly. It really does have the ability to make or break your business in just a day. So, are you doing everything possible to take advantage of it this old, yet new marketing outlet?
Having people speak positively about your business will have you reaping the benefits. Word of mouth drives over 50% of purchasing decisions and it also improves your credibility with potential customers. In fact, an offline referral could outweigh a negative review online – if handled properly. But, that doesn’t mean you’re online reputation doesn’t matter. You will need to maintain both, online and offline, as well as an overall positive branding presence.
Word of Mouth Marketing
Start by delivering an exceptional customer experience each and every time you connect or meet. Remember, if you make a client happy then they will tell 1 or 2 people, but if you make them unhappy then expect them to respond tenfold. First impressions are difficult to change, so make yours count. All it takes is an email or to drop a postcard in the mail… another oldy but goody!
Don’t be afraid. Utilize one of the best tools today in your arsenal, your social business pages, and do something that makes you stand out from your competitors. Many businesses drone on about themselves. Why not try something different… share content from other businesses? Share information that is educational and entertaining. These posts are more likely to be shared and discussed by your followers and their friends. This turns into priceless word of mouth marketing for your business. Become the “go to” business for your industry news.
DON’T BE AFRAID! Monitor what’s being said about your business and engage your followers. If and when negative reviews and comments come in, be prepared and handle them professionally showing consumers you care about their feelings and impressions of your brand. Ridiculing a customer for negative feedback only means one thing… game over. Trust me, responding negatively in anyway can quickly damage your reputation. Use this opportunity to your advantage. Win your customers!
Another step to successful Word of Mouth Marketing is to follow up with customers. Let them know you are thinking about them. Let them know how you are improving your services for them, and ask for their feedback. A friendly email, postcard or phone call could make you privy to potential problems or potential extra business. These marketing outlets also act as a reminders for clients to share their exceptional experience with a positive reviews or recommendations. Just remind them and ask. We all need attention.
Word of Mouth Marketing can be a powerful tool for your business. It will take some effort. Just keep in mind, it is still one marketing outlet. Do not rely solely on word of mouth. The best strategy, to attain the most exposure, is to use Word of Mouth Marketing in conjunction with your website, social marketing, ad promotions, print materials, email, personal branding and more! Then, you will know success.
If you need help growing your Word of Mouth Marketing, do not be afraid to ask a professional. They know all about the cross marketing outlets you could better use to your advantage.